Smoke meth, get paid compensation

Meth crystals

Newshub reports: quote.

The Government is paying out around $440,000 on Monday to compensate tenants who were wrongly evicted from Housing New Zealand homes after meth testing standards changed.

Financial compensation is being given to 55 people evicted from their Housing New Zealand homes, who will each receive an average of $7735. So far only around 295 out of 800 eligible former Housing NZ tenants have been contacted. end quote.

So we are looking at a possible $6 million in compensation for people who broke the law and contaminated their state houses by smoking methamphetamine because they just didn’t smoke quite enough of it. quote.

The Government on Friday changed regulations so that the compensation payments would not affect any benefit payments, and the first payments are being made on Monday. Others affected by the bungle have been urged to come forward. end quote.

This was never a bungle. The previous government acted on advice given at the time. It strikes me as rather convenient that, at a time when the demand for social housing is the highest on record, the government’s chief scientist, Peter Gluckman, suddenly decided that the contamination levels for methamphetamine had been set too low, and suddenly all these houses that had previously been considered unsafe for children to live in were perfectly okay. Really. quote.

In September, Housing New Zealand apologised for wrongfully kicking out about 800 tenants from their state homes as a result of meth tests that were found to be pointless. It was discovered around?$100 million had been wasted?on the tests. end quote.

Wasted? How about those houses that were above the new levels? They would never have been tested and found unsafe if this money hadn’t been ‘wasted’. quote.

Earlier this year, a report from then-Chief Science Advisor Sir Peter Gluckman found there was no evidence homes in which meth had been smoked were harmful to live in. It acknowledged the effects on tenants losing their belongings and getting poor credit ratings.

The testing guidelines used by Housing NZ between July 2013 and May 2018 were found to have little merit. About half tested positive according to the guidelines at the time, which was 10 times lower than the new standard in place since May. end quote.

It is a matter of opinion as to whether or not the new levels are ?safe?. If it were me, I would not want to live in a house that had been contaminated with methamphetamine at all, but obviously I am just paranoid. quote.

“The biggest damage done to the tenants was the loss of their home and personal belongings because of the faulty meth tests,” said AAAP’s Ricardo Menendez, referring to evictees who threw out their belongings because of fear of meth contamination.

“Cash compensation will go some way towards addressing the material hardship evicted tenants have been put into because of the evictions, but the money will not be able to be properly used unless they are re-housed.

“We are calling on the Government to build and repair enough state homes to make them available for the affected tenants. end quote.

Hang on. All these contaminated houses are okay now; the government and its former chief scientist say so. Why can’t they just move back in?

I am appalled to think that people who were breaking the law and contaminating their houses with methamphetamine should be compensated with taxpayers’ money because an arbitrary decision was made that contamination levels had previously been set too low. Methamphetamine is a class A drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act and its use normally attracts severe penalties. This government has decided to compensate people who were using the drug, because they contaminated state-owned houses but did not contaminate them quite enough.

This is your crazy new government, folks. Throwing your money down the toilet one meth contaminated state house at a time.